Sunday, August 30, 2015

Our Beautiful World - Beads

Our Beautiful World is a photo blog where the hosts provide a word prompt each week and challenge participants to upload beautiful photography from around the world.  This week the word is Beads.  So I got a few of my Noonday Collection together and took these photos this morning.

Noonday is a home sales business that sells jewelry made in the developing world to help struggling moms and other individuals make a living by selling their product to American consumers.  I've previously hosted a trunk show (their name for inside the home sales) and picked up these pieces.

Each piece comes with the story about how they are made.  The brown beads were local seeds that are gleaned, cleaned and strung into a super long necklace that wraps at least three times around my neck.  Great for multiple different looks.  The green beads are paper beads made by hand by the artisans and strung together with some metal, blingy beads.  Green is my favorite color!  The bracelet is made of hand crafted metal beads.  The metal is gleaned from local fields where artillery shells lay spent.  These shells are melted down and the beads made from the shell casing.  The earings are carved by hand from local shells.

I love how each piece came with a story. The tray is also from Noonday - handcrafted from local wood.  If you get a chance, stop by their website.  You can host a trunk show or just purchase from the website.  I am in no way associated with Noonday, just a fan with an opportunity to share something beautiful with the world.

I'm so grateful for Our Beautiful World and their weekly challenges.  It gets me out of my normal schedule and helps me look at the world differently.  I always am inspired by the other challenge participants.  Stop on over to take a peek or join the fun!

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Lost in Thought

I recently picked up some Brusho watercolor crystals.  I'd watched Jennifer McGuire's video and felt I just had to give it a try.  I played around, but haven't snapped photos.  I did use this strip of watercolor "bursts" on a quick note card and thought I would share this card with you here.

The flowers are from an ancient bottle of Making Memories flowers. The centers are Worn Lipstick glitter which also was used around the store bought shaped tag.  The sentiment is a fail - at least in the picture as you can see the very fine "Thinking Of" in all that glitter.  I'm going to attempt to get those photos posted and share the fun with you. I'm certainly enjoying the watercolor techniques right now.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Butterfly Love

I had stamped and die cut these butterflies from pattered paper (hard to see but that is a white polka dot pattern o pale pink paper) using my Heartfelt Creations Botanical Wings stamp and die set.  Looking around for something to do, I found some paper doilies which I'd cut in half for another project.  What to do to use them?

The pictures are hard to see, but the patterned paper 1/2 circles all have glitter pen added accents to add interest.

A whole set of cards that I can give away to someone.  The inside is blank so that they can use these cards for any purpose.

I'm linking up to Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge Simon Say Anything Goes, Word Art Wednesday's Challenge #198 Anything Goes Family,  and Ruby's Rainbow Challenge #111Diecuts or Punches.  Come j oi n the fun or be inspired.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

A Thoughtful Gift for My Dear Coworkers

I thought it would be fun to give a little treat to a few of the ladies at my work.  A small group of ladies agreed to be  take a name and be a secret pal to encourage and strengthen one another.  I can't tell you how very timely the small kindnesses have been, making my day bright.

I purchased kraft treat bags from Hobby Lobby and printed a description of the sweet treat using my computer and printer.  I simply ran them through with the folded edge first and used the flip function in Word so that the printing was readable when done.

The last step was to search the stash for some beautiful decorations. In this case I found some acetate butterflies and and vellum flowers stamped with my Heartfelt Creations Arianna Blooms stamp and die cut.  I colored the clear vellum with my Faded Jeans Distress Marker and shaped them before gluing onto the package.  Super fun and I think it did brighten my day and probably my coworkers' day as well.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Our Beautiful World #111 - Stairs

That's me, Andie!

Say Hi, Brandy!
 Our Beautiful World word prompt this week is Stairs.  Kirsty shared over at her blog, Handmade Little Things, a picture of the Loretto Chapel in Santa Fe.  I've been there and it got me thinking of what stairs I might have visited.  I stumbled upon these pictures taken in July 2012 when Brandy and I took a road trip to Sedona.

We're both slightly mortified at the thought of photos of us on the web, but the perspective on these photos was hard to pass up - that is definitely a set of stairs!

Of course, as beautiful as the scenery was, please know that our objective on the trip was a stop at the Art Institute of Glitter in Cottonwood, Arizona.  All that beautiful, shiny glitter.  It was a good trip!

Come join the fun over at Our Beautiful World to be inspired or to join the fun.

Friday, August 21, 2015

An Aster for Your Birthday

Another co-worker birthday card to share with you today.  I needed something simple and sweet. So I turned to my puppy dog (10 1/2 years old!) for inspiration.

I picked up some asters at Trader Joe's, stuffed them into a vase and my dog, Abby, always demands to smell the flowers.  Which reminded me of my Heartfelt Creations Delicate Aster dies.

Using an online color inspiration, I went to the stash and found the grey patterned paper and the neon green scraps.  I swear the green isn't quite so neon in real life and the Aster really shines.  Simple, but effective to let someone at work know I thought of them on their birthday.

ETA:  I'm linking up to Ruby's Rainbow challenge #111 Diecuts or Punches and CropStop's Linky Party #7 and a Give-Away

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dancing Your Way to Health

My watercolors were out on the work table and so I couldn't help myself.  I decided to try to act a little like an artist.  I am slowly coming to terms with the idea that I may, in fact, have artistic tendencies.  This might sound funny to you since I've had a craft blog for several years, but I always thought of myself as crafty rather than artistic.  My grandma had purchased a little dancing mouse stamp set from Close to My Heart several years back, never used it and gave it to me.  I had not yet used it so I made this card.

I loosely used Kristina Werner's technique with Distress Markers starting with a stamped image using Antique Linen Distress ink.  The marker colors included:

  • Scattered Straw
  • Worn Lipstick
  • and Weathered Wood
I used Strathmore watercolor paper which is the right price on sale and a perfect medium for this technique.

Ultimately, I gave this little card to my MIL as she was recovering from a minor surgery on her foot.  Minor or not, the thought of dancing around made her smile- just the right touch I'd say.

If you haven't given your inner artist a chance (like me!), let her out.  She's not too bad and look what you have to show for your efforts! Ive also found the challenges help me to think of my craftiness differently.  I'm linking this up to The Ribbon Girl Blog challenge August Colour Challenge- Pink and Word Art Wednesday's Challenge#197 - AnythingGoes/Family.  Come join the fun and challenge yourself to see your craftiness differently.

Monday, August 17, 2015

More Watercoloring Fun

I just couldn't help myself.  I kept up the watercoloring.  I had to find something to keep the card set fresh, so these are all made with patterned paper and a little stitched rectangles sentiment.

The papers are from an assortment of paper pads- I tried to match the Distress Ink color to the patterns in the paper or at least coordinate a bit.

My least favorite- look at the stem here- not good on the coloring.  Still, it is kinda a fabulous match to that background paper.  Maybe it saves the card, yes?!

This last one might be my favorite.  Yellow is not typically high on my appeal list, but the background paper, the offset with the blue- it all works for me.  This was so much fun, I'm looking around for additional watercolor techniques.  Don't forget to check out Kristina Werner who inspired this card set if you are interested in using this technique.

I'm linking this up to The Ribbon Girl Blog challenge August Colour Challenge- Pink, Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge - Citrus With a Twist, and Word Art Wednesday's Challenge#196 - AnythingGoes/Family.  Come join the fun.

Friday, August 14, 2015

A Tasty Treat for Your Birthday

Brandy shared this photo of a card she made and it was so yummy I couldn't wait to share with you.  Brandy colored the image with her Tombow markers.   Lots of care and energy went into this lovely card.   I just love the vibrant colors of the markers.  She asked me if there were too many sequins.   My response was to ask, can you have too many sequins?   What do you think?

I'm linking this up to Simon Says Stamp's Wednesday Challenge Simon Says food and/or Drink and Word Art Wednesday's Challenge #196 Anything Goes.  Come join the fun.

ETA:  I've linked up to Double Click challenge Thank You Cherry Much : Use Food.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Watercoloring Fun

I am so into the whole watercolor thing right now.  It somehow make me look like I know what I'm doing.  I went craaazy last weekend stamping and watercoloring using my WPlus9 Very Vintage Greetings stamp set.

I used a similar technique to what Kristina Werner uses in this video by stamping the flower in the Distress Marker first and then using a water brush to pull the color into the flower.  I went back over the image after it was dry with the fine point of the marker to darken some of the lines in the flower making it sharper in some areas.

The stem doesn't actually come with the WPlus9 stamp set.  I ended up using the branch from my Papertrey Ink Out on a Limb stamp.  I simply didn't ink the branch part of the stamp.  You can kinda see where the branches would be.  I stamped in the green Distress Ink and then used a waterbrush to make the image more "blurry".  Here too I added some fine color with the tip of the Distress Marker.

The color can be soft to deep depending on your technique and how you ink up the paper.  I'm so in love with this technique that I still have plans for a few more.  This was I can give these away as a card set.  Stay tuned!

Until then,  I'm linking up to Simon Says Stamp's Monday Challenge Homegrown Summer as my flowers look like wonderful summer blooms and Word Art Wednesday's Challenge #196: Anything Goes.   Come join the fun.